Foreign Language

Chinese 1

The purpose of Chinese 1is to provide students a platform to learn and appreciate Chinese language and culture. Through the learning of pinyin (official phonetic system for the pronunciation of Mandarin Chinese), characters, words, basic daily conversations, and short stories, students will be able to gain and improve Chinese language skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Introduction and appreciation of culture include Chinese holidays, history, clothes, food, legend stories, etc.. Students will learn Chinese through different methods, which include immersion, games, lecture, demonstration, videos, assessment, practice, etc.. The topics for this class include but are not limited to basic character reading and writing, basic greeting and talking about families, describing locations, colors, fruits, and a lot of other topics related to daily life.


Chinese 2

Chinese 2 is based on Chinese 1. Students will keep learning Mandarin Chinese language and culture through textbook, PPTs, handouts, videos, and different classroom activities. Students will be trained in four skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Topics for Chinese 2 include but are not limited to formal and informal ways of greetings, asking and describing directions, making suggestions and how to refuse someone politely, talking about families and schools, talking about age and other topics related daily life. The goal of this class is to help students understand and communicate better.


Spanish 1

This course is focused on Spanish language acquisition, using comprehensible input and TPRS pedagogical methods. There is a focus on the acquisition of high-frequency structures. The class will use these structures in discussions, stories, and cultural explorations, and students will be expected to recognize them when read or heard and, in time, be able to produce them in speech and writing.  Because success in the course hinges on repetition of high-frequency language, students should expect 90-95% of the course to be conducted in Spanish. This course is focused on acquisition rather than explicit memorization so that students will internalize the language for the long term, rather than studying it for the short term and forgetting it soon after the completion of the course.  Students will also learn about Spanish-speaking countries and native Spanish speakers. This course is highly interactive and constant student engagement is critical for success.


Spanish 2

This course is focused on Spanish language acquisition, using pedagogical techniques based on Stephen Krashen’s comprehensible input theory (simply: “we acquire language when we understand message”) and Merrill Swain’s output hypothesis (“the act of producing language [speaking or writing] constitutes...part of the process of second language learning”). The course will rely on the repetition of high-frequency structures, and students will be expected to recognize them when read or heard and, in time, be able to produce them in speech and writing. High-frequency structures will also be used to learn about the people and cultures of Spanish-speaking countries. Because one cannot learn Spanish by speaking English, students should expect 99% of the course to be conducted in Spanish. This course is focused on acquisition rather than explicit memorization so that students will internalize the language for the long term, rather than studying it for the short term and forgetting it soon after the completion of the course. This course is highly interactive and constant student engagement is critical for success.


Spanish 2 Honors

Students build on a strong mastery of level I Spanish language. This course is conducted mainly in Spanish and students are expected to use Spanish to communicate in class. Students will narrate short videos in the past, write daily journal entries, present in Spanish to the class on a variety of topics, and read four novels in Spanish.